Hillsborough County Union head Jean Clements gets the star treatment in Newsweek

At a meeting with members of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, the Tampa City Council and Hillsborough County Commissioners, School Board Chair MaryEllen Elia and board member Dorothea Edgecomb took pride in announcing improved scores  with a number of public schools in the county.

16 of 27 traditional high schools improved at least one letter grade, including eight that earned A's, up from two last year.  Three of those schools - Blake, East Bay & King, made dramatic improvements, going from "D" schools all the way up to being classified as an "A" school.

"Yeah, we are proud, " Edgecomb said on Tuesday.

Middleton High School went from a D to a C school, meaning it will get a reprieve and be taken off the state's "intervene" list.

Edgecomb also said that amongst the largest school districts in the state, Hillsborough's graduation rates are one of the highest in Florida (82.3%), and drop-out rate (0.7%) is amongst the lowest in the state.

Meanwhile, the Hillsborough County School District, the recipient of a $100 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation last year based on its creative experimentation with teacher pay and development, continues to attract national attention.